High Heat Kitchen

Cream Puffs: Craquelin pâte à choux

Hello there!

So, it’s time for new adventures in the kitchen! It’s time to try something delicious and I’ve got it for you. Here it comes, guys: craquelin pate a choux!

Excuse me, what? Craq… Craqeline? What is that? How to spell it?

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Ok, please don’t panic =) Craquelin pate a choux it’s french pastries like cream puffs, but contain two different type of dough: pate a choux and sort of pate sucree on the top. The second dough, actually, calls craquelin, but the technics is very similar to pate sucree.

So the craquelin gives usual cream puffs that distinctive crackly look which is very pretty, don’t you think? Especially if you add some food color ;) I choose red, because, you know, it’s St Valentine’s Day!

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So cute little babies! And, trust me, they are delicious! The topping is crunchy, but puffs very soft and delicate. What’s inside? Well, it depends of your tastes. I choose vanilla pastry cream and mint whipped cream and it’s worth it.

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I thought they’ll take too much time and energy from me, but honestly they weren’t. The whole process took about only 2 hours include making both type of filling. Not bad =)

I think these cream puffs is perfect dessert for St Valentine’s Day’s dinner. Sweets for sweet! =)

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Craquelin

  • 85 gr brown sugar

  • 85 gr all-purpose flour

  • 75 gr unsalted butter (cubed, at room temperature)

  • Food coloring (I use liquid)

Pate a choux

  • 250 gr water

  • 150 gr all-purpose flour

  • 100 gr unsalted butter

  • 5 large eggs

  • 5 gr sugar

  • 5 gr salt

Pastry cream

  • 125 gr (1/2 cup) whole milk

  • 30 gr (3 tbsp) sugar

  • 30 gr (from 2 eggs) egg yolks

  • 12 gr (1 tbsp) corn starch

  • 10 gr unsalted butter (2 tbsp), room temperature

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Whipped cream

  • 450 ml heavy cream (very cold)

  • 4-5 tbsp confectioners sugar

  • Few sprigs of fresh mint


Method

  • Step 1

    In a bowl, mix together the butter, flour and sugar.

  • Step 2

    Cream everything with a spatula or wooden spoon until the dough is smooth.

  • Step 3

    Add few drops of red food coloring.

  • Step 4

    Mix again until everything is incorporated.

  • Step 5

    Put the dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll the dough very thin, about 3mm by thickness.

  • Step 6

    Cut circles using cookie cutters or glass. Slide the dough on a baking sheet and freeze the dough.

Make pate a choux

  • Step 7

    In a bowl, sift the flour and set aside. In a medium saucepan, bring to boil the water, butter, sugar and salt.

  • Step 8

    Add flour and remove from heat. Work mixture together and return to heat. Continue working the mixture until all flour is incorporated and dough forms a ball.

  • Step 9

    Transfer mixture into bowl of a standing mixer and let cool for 3 or 4 minutes.

  • Step 10

    With mixer fitted with the paddle attachment mix the dough for a minute or so, on low speed, to release some of the heat.

  • Step 11

    Add the eggs, one at a time, completely incorporating each one before adding the next. Beat until the dough gets thick and ribbony.

  • Step 12

    Put dough into piping bag fitted with a round tip (I use #12 tip)

Preheat the oven to 480 F (250 C).

  • Step 13

    Pipe the dough into circles about the same diameter like cookie cutters for craquelin onto silicone mats or parchment lined sheet pans.

  • Step 14

    Remove craquelin-circles from freezer and set them on top of the puffs.

  • Step 15

    Place the cream puffs in the oven and immediately turn it off or reduce temperature to 320 F. It takes about 15 minutes. Then increase the temperature to 340 F and bake for 15-20 more minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Prepare pastry cream

  • Step 16

    In a saucepan pour the milk and vanilla extract and bring to a boil.

  • Step 17

    In a mixing bowl, beat the sugar and corn starch with the egg yolks.

  • Step 18

    Add one-third of the hot milk mixture, beating constantly to temper the eggs.

  • Step 19

    Pour this mixture back into the saucepan and bring to a boil stirring constantly. Remove from the heat.

  • Step 20

    Transfer the cream to a bowl to cool stirring sometimes. When the pastry cream has cooled to 140 F (or lightly warm), cut the butter into pieces and beat it into the cream.

  • Step 21

    Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pastry cream and refrigerate until needed (at least for 1 hour).

Prepare pastry cream

  • Step 22

    Stir fresh mint leaves into heavy cream. Cover and refrigerate

  • Step 23

    Strain the cream into a cold bowl, pressing on the mint leaves to extract as much liquid as possible; discard the mint.

  • Step 24

    Whip the cream with the sugar until medium peaks. Transfer the whipped cream into the pastry bag with star tip.

  • Step 25

    Cut away the top of each cream puffs using serrated knife, set the tops aside. Pipe the pastry cream into the puffs just until it cover bottom.

  • Step 26

    Pipe the whipped cream into puffs over the pastry cream creating a large mound.

  • Step 27

    Put the “lid” on top. Powder with powdered sugar. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

P.S. Have fun love-birds! =*

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